IN THE COURT OF APPEAL
1993, No. 676;
1995, No. 224 and 734
|MOK YUI HING
Coram: Power, V.-P., Mortimer and Mayo, JJ.A.
Date of delivery of judgment: 16 May 1996
J U D G M E N T
Mortimer, J.A. (giving the judgment of the Court) :
1. We have given leave to appeal against a number of sentences out of time. The circumstances under which these cases come before the court are that on four occasions this applicant received sentences of imprisonment after trials. It appears that on some of those occasions the judge concerned was not informed of the total sentences to which the applicant was then subject. The result of the sentences, to which we will refer in a moment, appears to us to be that the applicant is serving a total of about 13 years. It falls to this Court to consider whether that sentence is an appropriate sentence having regard to the totality of offences which have been committed by the applicant.
The offences on 11 March 1992 and 29 October 1992
2. We are content to take the background from a very helpful summary which has been provided by Mr Saw for the Crown.
3. On 28 November 1984 the applicant was sentenced to 11 years imprisonment on two counts of rape and four counts of robbery. He was released from those terms early in 1992. He is now about 30 years of age.
4. Shortly after his release from those sentences of 11 years, he was committed further serious offences. A series of offences took place on 11 March 1992. The applicant together with another man, one of whom was armed with a knife, assaulted and robbed a Mr Lee of $3,000, his wrist watch and a portable telephone.
5. About 1½ hours later Mr Lo was on his way home to police married quarters in Kowloon when he was accosted by the applicant and another man. They asked him for directions but almost immediately after, the applicant grabbed his shirt, produced a knife, threatening to stab him. Fortunately for Mr Lo, there were two police officers nearby and they intervened. The applicant fled but was apprehended. He then tried to bribe the arresting officer by offering him a gold watch in exchange for his freedom.
6. Consequently, the applicant was charged with, assault with intent to rob, possession of an offensive weapon, offering an advantage and robbery of Mr Lee.
7. For some reason not immediately apparent to this Court, the applicant was granted bail.
8. The hearing for those offences was fixed for 5 January 1993. However, during the time that he was on bail, he committed other offences.
9. In the early hours of 29 October 1992 the police stopped a Mercedes Benz motorcar. The applicant was one of three occupants. Inquiries were made and identity cards were asked for whereupon the occupants of the car ran away. The applicant was apprehended after a struggle. A search of the motorcar revealed that there were two imitation pistols, three mouth masks; three Balaclavas; some pairs of gloves; three large beef knives; some rolls of tape; some screw drivers and the original registration plates of the car - the car bore false plates. Consequently, the applicant was charged with conspiracy to commit robbery and possession of an imitation firearm with intent to commit an arrestable offence. Even more astonishingly the applicant was again given bail and the hearing for those offences was fixed for 25 October 1993.
The first trial
10. In the course of the first trial for the earlier offences committed on 11 March 1992, the applicant absconded before the trial was complete. The result was that the trial continued in his absence for three of the offences, but so far as the robbery of Mr Lee was concerned, that was adjourned for a later trial on a new indictment.
The offences on 2 March 1993
11. During the time that he was on the run, the applicant was arrested again. On 2 March 1993, a party of police officers entered a karaoke establishment. They were checking identification cards among those who were present. The applicant was there. He was seen going into the toilet and thereby aroused their suspicions. When he was stopped by a uniformed sergeant and asked for his identification card, suddenly the applicant threw himself at the sergeant. There...